As we make our way down the home stretch of 2016, it’s time to look ahead to what might be coming down the bend. Here are three trends that we think will shape the oil and gas industry in the coming year.
All signs point to more investment in oil and gas, from both internal and external sources. Here are two pieces of supportive evidence:
- Barclays’ midyear global spending survey found that oil and gas companies plan to increase spending on exploration and production by 5% next year.
- EY’s global survey of private equity firms working in the oil and gas sector found that 43% plan to make acquisitions by the first half of 2017. This signals that private equity firms feel positive about “greater consensus of the oil price future and more favorable asset valuations.”
This optimism fits with the overall perception of the market. In Deloitte’s most recent market survey, nearly six in ten oil and gas professionals said that the industry recovery either has already begun or will begin in 2017.
Automation is a major driving force in many industries right now, including oil and gas. In general, automation helps companies improve efficiency, streamline operations, and reduce downtime.
It can also spur new innovation. According to a DNV GL study, automation will be a key driver of new technology development for the industry through 2025. Automated drilling and automated pipeline monitoring are just a few examples of how this development could play out.
Greater focus on sustainability
With new environmental regulations and a general trend toward better corporate citizenship, sustainability has become much more than a buzzword. Many oil and gas companies have also discovered that being environmentally friendly is also better for their bottom line.
Here are just a few of the ways the oil and gas industry is becoming more sustainable:
- Recycling used oil
- Establishing maintenance schedules to catch small problems before they become big ones
- Reducing fugitive emissions from control valves
- Reconditioning older valves rather than replacing them
- Treating wastewater more efficiently
- Improving sustainability reporting
This trend will undoubtedly continue into 2017 and beyond. Learn more about how the right valve practices can help oil and gas companies achieve both sustainability and cost savings.
Overall, the 2017 outlook for oil and gas is positive on many fronts, which is good news across the board. We’re excited to see how these trends and others develop over the year!